Determining the Least Restrictive Environment
IDEA requires that special education students be provided a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive environment (LRE). Special education teachers are among of the decision makers who identify what is the most appropriate, least restrictive educational environment for each student for whom an Individualized Education Program (IEP) is developed. It is important that special education teachers be aware of the benefits and restrictions of each type of placement setting and know how to provide an individualized, effective education for students with disabilities.
Part 1: Graphic Organizer
Create a graphic organizer outlining five placement settings inside and outside of the school setting. For each placement setting, describe how that placement can support students with mild to moderate disabilities. Include the possible benefits and drawbacks of each placement setting as well.
Part 2: Essay
Write a 1,000-1,250 word essay regarding the FAPE requirement of IDEA. Based on FAPE, discuss how the LRE should be appropriate in meeting student needs and following legislative guidelines. In addition, discuss the factors that should be used to determine the appropriate placement in the LRE for students with disabilities to ensure they receive a free and appropriate public education. Discuss how a student might move through a continuum of placements (e.g., inclusion, resource, self-contained) to best meet his or her needs and level of support.
Support your findings with a minimum of three scholarly resources.